If you’re wondering how I finally found the time to catch up with my blog posts, the answer is: the weather! As I stated earlier, Alan left for Montana on Thursday, and within a few hours we were hit with the worst winter storm that we’ve had in quite some time. If he had scheduled his flight for late afternoon or early evening, he would have been stuck here. It’s true that Texans are quite wimpy when it comes to winter weather, but this was really something! The pictures below are not of snow…that is sleet that has been compacted and is now pretty much ice!
Here’s an overview looking out of our front door:
Here’s a picture I took of the road that runs in front of the house (Pretty slippery!):
In a weird (and lucky) twist of fate, our heater went out just a couple of days before the cold snap. We had a new unit installed about 6 or 7(?) years ago, and it was a total lemon from the day we got it. I’ve lost count how many times we have had it repaired, and this time it was going to cost quite a bit (again!). It seems they quit making that model (I wonder why?), and parts are hard to find, and this fact makes them cost a lot. So a command decision was made to just replace the whole unit. We got a Lennox this time instead of Amana and are hoping it lasts much longer. Even though it hit our purse pretty hard, at least we are warm, and ever so grateful that things were fixed up before it got so very cold.
I used the first couple of days of our “snow days” to catch up on some laundry and general housework. Church was cancelled today (quite unusual), and I didn’t want to do regular chores, so I decided to catch up on the blog. I also fired up my bread machine. My mother-in-law gave it to me many, many years ago, and it’s still working! The bread turned out so well, and it was so easy, I found myself asking, “Why don’t I use it more often?” Just dumb! I will certainly crank it up more often in the future. Here’s the recipe I used for the bread I made today. I really like it because I have quite a few cans of potato flakes in my food storage arsenal, and I need as many uses for them as I can get! It’s also just plain good!
Crusty Potato Bread
3-1/4 cups bread flour
1/2 cup instant mashed potato flakes
1 tablespoon white sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons butter
1-1/4 cups water
2 teaspoons instant yeast
Place ingredients in the pan of the bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Select White Bread Cycle; press Start.
Note: This recipe was originally found on the “All Recipes” website – to visit the site, clickhere.
Since I didn’t want to break my neck trotting back and forth to the chicken coop, Opal Chicken has been sleeping in her dog crate in the craft room. I have taken her outside a few times to let her stretch her legs, as well as to show her that it really is awful out there and she should be glad to be inside! She also has spent some time in the mud room (the floor is covered in newspaper) so that she can eat and drink and stretch some more. Nestlé Bunny has also been stranded inside, but she has so much fun chasing Toffee around the house that she doesn’t care.
That’s pretty much my life: keeping fur and feathers alive, aside from doing yard work and such. I am hoping it clears up soon because I have a date this week with this little girl:
Paisley (aka: “Stink-A-Tha”) is growing to be quite a little lady. She loves going and doing things, and is definitely into her weekly dance lessons. Since Fox has been born, she has also gone to an event to meet Doc McStuffins, and she went to a little theatre play showing “Blue’s Clues” and got to have her picture made with Blue. In an effort to make sure that her events are not spoiled by her baby brother melting down, I actually have spent more of my time with Fox (aka: “Boyfriend”), keeping him home while Stink-A-Tha goes out with her parents. Even though it has been for her benefit, I think she might be feeling a little neglected by her Old Lolee. Therefore, I am looking forward to picking her up some morning this week, doing a little shopping, and then taking her to lunch. I never want my girl to feel less than wonderful in her Old Lolee’s heart!
As for Boyfriend, he’s growing bigger and wants to walk so badly that he can’t stand it! He has already been scooching across the floor (that was last month), and I anticipate that he will be quite the go-getter. Mandy says that he will be the one who destroys her house. But here’s the thing: He has this crazy little crooked smile that he flashes that just melts your heart. I have a feeling that it won’t matter what he does, or how much destruction he causes -- he will get out of all kinds of trouble with that little crooked smile and those big, blue eyes.