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Some things that have made me happy lately…

I recently replaced the curtains in my family room (that is its own story) because one of the was severely faded. The other one was fine, and it seemed a waste to toss it, especially since I really like these curtains. But what do you do with only one curtain? Unrelated is the fact that our cat’s litter box resides in the linen closet, which means the door needs to stay open all the time, and there is always the risk that the door gets shut and then we have unpleasantness. I’ve been contemplating a solution to this situation for a while. Suddenly, they came together!  A backyard game of “license plate baseball” broke out randomly. License plate baseball is one of those things that will go down in Dapelo family history. It has only happened a few times, but for some reason it is legendary. We use old license plates as the bases, which is how it got its name. The joys of Mr. Putter & Tabby live on. Never too old. This morning, my dad took Micah and I bowling. I got to try out my new

Lessons from my Septic Tank

The joys of homeownership paid us a visit this week. First, the water dispenser on our fridge decided to stop functioning properly, leak all over the place, and need to be replaced. Thankfully, a few parts and a handy hubby and we are back in business.  Today, he replaced the brakes on the Subaru because it was making a horrible squealing noise like cars do when they start demanding new brakes… Yesterday’s situation, however, required a professional. For a couple of weeks, our downstairs toilet has been making a weird gurgly noise after you flush it. We initially thought it had something to do with the new innards Dave had to put in it recently (since it was running and needed the ball float mechanism replaced with a new situation), but that wasn’t the problem. We thought there might be a clog, so tried plunging it and even snaking. Made no difference.  Then Wednesday, I went outside to look at the garden and got all kinds of heinous whiffs of sewage smell.  {insert ominous music} So D

September Meal Plan (& making peace with my Instant Pot)

Yesterday, “monthly meal plan” came up on my digital to do list. The past month or two, I’ve been operating week to week, which is better than nothing, but monthly is one thousand times better. As usual, I was dissatisfied with available methods/templates for this task, so I whipped up my own. I think I love this. Highlighting weekends is important to just give me a little grounding for where we are in the week.  You’ll probably notice a lot of instant pot recipes on there in the first half of the month. I’m still in the middle of my tour de instant pot - the end of which will come at whatever time I determine whether or not the beast gets voted off the island. Lots of people gave me lots of suggestions, plus ones I looked up on my own and people said they wanted to try. This has been going on for almost 2 weeks now, and so far only 2 recipes have gone directly into the recycling.  Here’s what we’ve tried (and liked enough to keep) so far:

Social Media contemplations.

I have been breaking my social media ban here and there, just to see how bad it is. I haven’t quite decided if or how I want to use these platforms going forward.  Mostly, I’ve discovered that Instagram isn’t that bad. There were a few people I followed who posted a lot of political stuff, so I discovered this really awesome feature called “mute”. That has and will continue to be my policy there. I don’t want to see it. I know you have the right to post it, and if that’s how you want to use your Instagram, that’s, of course, totally fine. It’s just not why I’m on Instagram and it’s my preference to not be confronted with political messages all the time. I just want to see people’s babies and puppies and pictures of beautiful fall leaves or snowmen, etc. You get the idea. Facebook is a bit of a different animal. I used to really like Facebook. It was a fun way to connect and interact. But, like everything else, it’s evolved. It’s become less of all that and more of a way to let people w

My favorite holiday

Back in the spring, I posted something somewhere about "clothesline day" being my favorite "holiday". In fact, here's a picture of me on Easter a few years ago, celebrating clothesline day (yes, with a mimosa - it was Easter). Basically, clothesline day is whatever day of the year happens to be the first day that the weather is warm, dry, and breezy enough to allow me to hang out my inaugural load of laundry. It makes me very happy, since, if you have read even a few posts on this blog you know that I am pretty well bonkers about line-dried laundry. I do, very much, love clothesline day. But it's not exactly a REAL holiday. And if I'm honest, I can't really even say that it's my favorite day of the year. That is something totally different: The Day After Thanksgiving. Some would call this day "Black Friday". Not me. Black Friday implies that I like the day because I enjoy getting up at ungodly hours of the night to stand in long lines i

Dear Americans,

Please be kind to one another. Please be decent human beings. Please rise above what the media expects of you.  Please remember that you have friends and relatives and coworkers and neighbors on all sides of the political scale.  Please keep in mind that, whichever candidate a person favors, they likely have a reason for doing so, same as you.  Please understand that that reason is probably not as sinister as you may think.  Please turn off your TV, put down your phone, or whatever it is you need to do if the anxiety you feel about this election is causing you to hate  people you actually love. If it’s causing you to hate anyone! When this is over, we still have to live with each other, work with each other, spend Christmas with each other.  Please don’t let your feelings about an election ruin your relationships. Or drive you to violence. Or make you believe that the world is ending. It’s not. The political leaders of our country do have quite a bit of power, but not that much. 

Growing in patience

 I am an outrageously impatient person.  This was revealed to me (again) today as I was pestering my poor husband with questions about kindle unlimited.  You see, I like to read books. I get bees in my bonnet all the time on various subjects and want to do research and read ALL the books on the subject de jour as soon as possible. Part of this urgency is due to the fact that I have a rather short attention span, and I know the next bee is just around the corner, and will be pushing its way into my bonnet at any moment, thereby edging out the current one. So with books, I rely a lot on the library. I place holds, pick up books, get them on my kindle if it’s faster.... But the library’s selection can be somewhat limited, especially when it comes to non-fiction or obscure books that I frequently find myself searching. Or, the wait is so long, by the time I get it, I will have forgotten why I wanted to read it! But paying for books is not something I’m keen to do. I’m so spoiled by the lib

November Meal Plan

Meal plans are something that have historically had a big presence on this blog. Not so much in recent years. Well, actually not very much has had much of a presence on this blog in recent years. But I digress.  Meal plans were big back in the day, because the overarching focus of this blog (and my life) at that time was homemaking and all that that entailed. Planning meals was an essential part of that. Unfortunately, my kids were ungracious enough to grow up and I had to grown up with them and get a job, and thus, my focus has hence become divided.  That is not to say that I don’t still have to perform all of those homemaking tasks which, at the time, dominated the bulk of my focus and energy (and all that fun stuff like changing diapers and bathing children and dealing with fevers and runny noses and fighting with the never-ending onslaught of excessive toys), they just get shunted onto the back burner of my time and energy where they continue to taunt me with the guilt of having no

An excess of negativity

I have a confession to make. I hope you will hear it. Along with it comes an apology. I have been feeling very convicted lately that my manner of speech and demeanor has been excessively negative. I could list off a number of excuses for why this may be. I'm sure you would nod your head and agree that all of them are perfectly legitimate reason for one to feel upset, angry, negative, pessimistic, etc.  But really, it is that I have allowed myself to become unfocused on the things that are true. I have allowed my heart and eyes to have been turned inward to my own reasoning of the things I see and experience around me and how I think they should be . I have not focused on Jesus and the promises of God's Word. I have neglected that relationship, due to a number of emotions and frustrations - not with God, but with what I have allowed to cloud my ideas about God - and my perception of things has been negatively impacted.  I have allowed myself to be negatively influenced by the n

adventures with spicy pickled beans

Well, thanks to COVID, we had some extra time on our hands this year (with all the lack of activities and school and commuting and all), so we did what everyone else did and planted an extensive garden. Dave built me these fantastic raised beds, we filled them with compost, added plants and didn’t do a lot else. One of the things we wound up with an abundance of is green beans. I planted both bush beans and pole beans. We eat beans at least once a week (with our pizza, because we’re weird like that), but at the height of the season, there’s really only so many green beans one family can use. Now, because I’m old-fashioned like that, I have long held this delusional fantasy of something along the lines of homesteading… living off-the-grid, if you will. I have this idealized, Little House on the Prairie idea of how we should live, not dependent on the grocery store, or really anyone, to aid in our “survival”… But, let’s face it, I’m not exactly cut out to be a “prepper”, much as I w