October 30, 2007

Apple Spider (0 Comments)

Filed under: Dictionary,TG — The Spider Herself @ 12:39 pm

Stuff you drink in the autumn.

October 29, 2007

How To Do Things- (2 Comments)

Filed under: KJ,Personalities — The Spider Herself @ 11:52 am

KJ style.

How to stop a bike:

Pedal. Don’t coast. Pedal. Don’t gently apply brakes. Pedal. When you see that you need to stop throw both feet off of pedals so you couldn’t apply brakes even if you wanted. Take a hand off of the handle bars, so you can’t steer, and put it out straight. Crash. Cry about your skinned knee and hand. Refuse to listen to instructions.

How to eat:

If it is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich: take off top and lick off the jelly. Slowly eat what is left.

If it is a meat sandwich: take off top, eat cheese and meat. Complain about having to eat the bread.

If it is toast with jelly or honey on it: lick off sweet stuff first.

If it is a salad: pick out with your fingers the things that you like, croûtons, olives and sunflower seeds leaving the yucky stuff to choke down on it’s own. Chew a lot but don’t swallow. Take 40 years to finish.

How to Dress:

Always wear a dress. The more frills and froo froo the better. Pink is best. Purple will do. A skirt will suffice in a pinch. Don’t worry about the weather. Complain loudly that there is “nothing to wear” when no dresses are clean. If someone else should try to tell you what to wear- fight for your dignity.

How to annoy your Mother:

Whine. Don’t EVER use words if a good whine will suffice. Throw back your head, arch your back and let it loose. Use your throat. Use your nasal passages. If you don’t like what is going on keep up a constant whine. Make use of the ‘ka, ka, ka’ sound in your throat. Point but don’t actually say what you want. If you must use words make them as nasally and high pitched as you can.

The rest of the time? Be sweet and helpful.

October 26, 2007

Burn You Weeds! (3 Comments)

Filed under: Yard and Garden — The Spider Herself @ 3:38 pm

We live in a unique area. It’s is a ‘sovereign nation’ all to itself, really. And you thought I lived in the United States, well, we do it’s just an island unto itself. Our little island has decided to follow EPA air quality standards. Never mind that the whole county around us does not and that we live in a rural area with not much industrialization/pollution. It’s what they decided and that is that! We can’t burn all summer, it’s pretty much universal that from a randomly picked day in June to an equally random date in September; no burning is allowed. Doesn’t matter how much rain we get it’s the dates, stupid! Anyway, now that we are technically allowed to burn we have to call to see if it will be allowed for our air quality. To be honest there are times we get an inversion, where the cold air gets trapped on the ground- held down by a higher pressure on top. It’s foggy and cold and miserable. On those days, I understand why it would not be a good idea to burn- it would all hang around for days on end. Other days, I just don’t get it. We were checking quite often to see if we could burn but they just were not allowing it. Finally, yesterday for the narrow window of 12 -3 PM, we could burn.

So The Col. came home about 1:30 and started the wanton burning. We raked up weeds, tumbleweeds, from the fences and ditches, lighting piles as we went. We were in a hurry! We had limited time. He was burning the ditches along the driveway when a bit of the grass field next door started burning. Ah well, it won’t go far. We finished up one side of the driveway and looked back. Oh, oh. The fire wasn’t going out and was making it’s way into the field. We sent HP for a shovel but he seemed to be taking his time, not understanding the urgency. The Col. tried the rake on it but that seemed to stir it up. Plus it was looking… largish. So he ran back to the house and filled up the sprayer tank with water. The sprayer tank holds quite a bit of water and is pulled by the garden tractor. I started raking away some of the dead material in the thin areas. Visions of California flashed through my mind. We had been pushing the time limit a mite and I kept thinking “don’t let the fire department show up!” You see, out here in our sovereign little island we have to PAY when the fire trucks show up. Yep, our local taxes don’t go to that. But you, dear federal tax payer, get to support it. Thank you! Except we get to pay a hefty fee if ever they actually have to come fight a fire for us. Isn’t it glorious? Fortunately, the little sprayer worked like a charm and put it out easily.

It really wasn’t too bad, the field was not harmed (probably did it some good) and it wasn’t close to any structures. But it was a tad worrisome for a bit. Yep, us pyros burning everything in sight.

There probably will not be another burn day until May. Shucks.

October 22, 2007

Salty Mail (1 Comment)

Filed under: Life — The Spider Herself @ 8:49 pm

I actually went to a Sunday School class for adults a couple of weeks ago. We are usually late and I sometimes have some other things to do so I am often not in attendance. We talked about being “salt” to the world and what it meant to lose our “saltiness”. We tasted crackers without salt to taste how flat it was compared to one with salt. I said something inane in class, just because I like to look foolish but after some thought- way after class was over- I came up with some ideas.

When a person is standing up for what they believe the Bible is saying and defending that position, kindly and gently- then they are being salt. When that same person is caught in a indiscretion then they lose their saltiness because people think that person was hypocritical. Any good they did before or will try to do after will be tainted. Also, if a person is constantly a grump to the clerk in the store, chewing them out for things beyond their control- is that person being ‘salt’? We would not be surprised to find that clerk does not want anything to do with church because the people there are two faced. When we are kind, giving, sincere and willing to admit when we goof up then we are being salt.

The following Saturday I received a card in the mail thanking me for being in class. Included was a small packet of salt. I thought it was a good reminder of what we talked about. Also, it was a gentle way of heaping molten coals on a person’s head if they were even considering skipping class the next day.

Last Sunday, I was once again dutifully in attendance and we discussed Matthew 5:28-30 which states (in part) “And if your right hand makes you stumble, cut it off, and throw it from you…”

I don’t mind saying that I await Saturday’s mail with a certain amount of trepidation. Perhaps it will be The Col.’s turn to open the mailbox.

October 20, 2007

Puzzle This One Through (0 Comments)

Filed under: KJ,Personalities — The Spider Herself @ 11:13 am

“What word starts open?”

Asked in the van, late at night, out of the blue- not in context with anything else being said.

October 18, 2007

Cabbage Soup (5 Comments)

Filed under: In the Kitchen — The Spider Herself @ 4:05 pm

I read recipes and go to many recipe sites on the Internet. I often get a chuckle from the reviews that are left about the recipes. They say something like this:

“I absolutely LOVED this recipe! I fixed it last night and OMG everyone GUSHED about it! I followed the recipe exactly except I didn’t have ingredient A so I substituted B, threw in some C because I had it on hand and I didn’t have any D so left it out. I also cooked it in the oven instead of on the stove. It turned out great! Would make it again!”

Is this still the same recipe? Can you make that many changes and still get the same thing?

I did the same thing last night- no, not leaving a review but in how I changed a recipe. Oh, I mean, I followed it exactly. I was vastly amused at myself. But I am easily entertained.

The background: we are watching our weight- and it’s not a pretty sight. The Col. had been eating plenty due to several circumstances where he had to eat out. So when I asked him what kind of soup he wanted for dinner, it being Wednesday the soup night, he answered Cabbage Soup. Probably as a joke but also thinking he wouldn’t like it and therefore wouldn’t eat too much. He don’t know me very well, do he? I took the challenge and ran with it.

I took a recipe that I had found here for Kohlsuppe-Cabbage Soup. The basic recipe is this:

1 small cabbage, chopped
6 cups chicken broth
4 slices bacon
1/2 cup minced onions
1 1/2 cups diced potatoes (frozen are okay, as are O’Brien potatoes)
salt and pepper, to taste
sour cream, for garnish


  1. Put the chopped cabbage and the broth in the crockpot, on high; simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
  2. In a sauté pan, cook the bacon slices until crisp; remove, chop roughly, and set aside.
  3. Sauté the onion in the bacon drippings until soft.
  4. Add the chopped bacon, onion, potato, and salt and pepper to the crockpot.
  5. Cook on high for an additional 1 to 1 1/2 hours hours, until the cabbage reaches the texture you prefer.
  6. Serve with a dollop of sour cream.
  7. Notes: would also be good with some dill weed or caraway added, or even kielbasa slices, if you like; I also added a 1 once cube of concentrated frozen duck stock, but as most folks don’t have it in their freezer I didn’t include it in the ingredient list; you could simmer this in a heavy pot on the stove for an hour instead of the crockpot, too.

Since I was starting to cook it at about 4:30 in the afternoon there was no way I could use the crockpot, so that was out. But the recipe does say that it could be cooked on the stove for an hour – so I didn’t stray too far that way. Then I looked at the methodology and decided that if I used a separate pan to saute the bacon and onion in then there would be another dirty pan to wash. Bad idea. Also the voices of the cooks at America’s Test Kitchen, one of my favorite TV shows, kept telling me to layer or build flavor. So I fried the bacon (already cut up) in my cast iron dutch oven, drained some of the fat and then cooked the onion (way more than 1/2 a cup) for awhile. Then I added the potatoes, letting them brown a little. Then the cabbage and let it brown and cook down. I put in two minced garlic cloves. After I could smell the garlic I added some chicken stock and stirred up the brown bits on the bottom. I didn’t have enough chicken stock so I added some water with a bit of chicken base (kind of like bullion). That still wasn’t enough so I added a pint of frozen turkey stock I had in the freezer. I was afraid too much chicken base would make it too salty. Then let it simmer awhile.

And guess what? It was good! The Col. took two helpings. 🙂 But at about 170 calories a serving he could afford to do that. Ha! How’s that for following a recipe?

October 16, 2007

Actually (5 Comments)

Filed under: KJ,Personalities,TG — The Spider Herself @ 4:03 pm

A conversation I actually overheard last night.

“Actually, it’s mine T!”

“Actually, it’s mine K!”

I actually don’t know where they learn these words.

October 15, 2007

Nightmares and Other Happenings (1 Comment)

Filed under: Life — The Spider Herself @ 4:08 pm

Don’t worry, I am still semi-sane and The Boy is still alive. The Toy Shotgun is, very sadly (sarcasm dripping from every word) , having many misfires- I think from bent darts. Some darts are lost, some are broken, sigh, it really is a shame. (snicker) I’ve had to listen to the Buyer’s remorse that he should have bought the other toy gun and how he likes the other gun he has better and why. There is only so much that I can listen to and maintain a sympathetic face but I try valiantly.

Finally, after about ten years, I purchased new glasses in August. Not that anyone has noticed. I went from larger round shaped lenses to stylish, smaller rectangular shaped ones and NO ONE noticed. Or at least said anything. Maybe they are being polite and since they can’t think of anything nice to say, they aren’t saying anything. But, anyway, I like them. I took them off on Saturday because I was getting a lovely back rub from Col. Panic and somehow they ended up on the floor… where a Pixie stomped on them. Pixies can do damage. Now they are lopsided and crooked on my face. I feel sloped when I wear them, like I have to keep adjusting my head. So I am back to my old glasses. I wore the old ones to Church yesterday. No one noticed. I will have to take the new ones in to be fixed because I can’t get them right myself. But I am sure no one will notice either way.

We received the wonderful news that a friend of ours is expecting their first baby and I think that news planted a seed in my sub-conscious because I had a dream Saturday night that The Col. was wanting another baby. In my dream, I was thinking- “but I’ve given everything away! What was I to do? ” And then all the complications that would arise with a new baby. What was he thinking? At my age??!!? Cue the hysterical laughter.

It ain’t gunna happen folks.

October 11, 2007

Guns, no Roses (4 Comments)

Filed under: HP,Personalities — The Spider Herself @ 3:34 pm

Pop! Thwup!

Col. Panic bought his son a toy shotgun. Oh joy.

I don’t know what it is about mothers and guns. I know, there are mothers out there that have no issue with them. I know mothers who hunt. Overall, I don’t have problems with guns… until my son’s hands grasp one. I know this is a toy gun but it still sends chills up my spin when I see him push it up at his chin and inform me it hurts when he fires it there. It causes my nerves to tingle when he fires it over his sister’s heads or points it at them. I keep repeating to myself- he is a boy! He is a boy and it’s a toy! because, somehow, that is supposed to make it better.

Pop! Thwup!

Then, of course, there is the constant noise associated with such a toy (Pop!). Darts whiz by and land (Thwup!). It’s especially fun to fire both barrels at once.

PopPop! ThwupThwup!!!

And the constant commentary.

“I missed it Mom!”

“The darts stick to the window without licking them first!”

“Can I fire on your calendar with the lighthouse figurines?”

Do you value your life?

“Can I shoot the camera traps?”

(Yes, they are still on top of the closet, gathering dust but don’t you dare take them down!)

Fine, but I’m not crawling up there to get them.

“Did you see that shot?”

“Guess, is the gun loaded?”

“Guess, are the shells in the secret compartment?”

“Can I shoot this box of cookies?” As he takes aim from four inches away.

Pop! Thwup!

I finally gave him some cracker boxes to use as targets but I guess they weren’t satisfactory enough because they didn’t fall over when hit.

Pop! Thwup, ping!

What was that? Oh, just a dart hitting one of the afore mentioned lighthouse figurines. He wasn’t aiming at it- honest.

There are round circles on the windows now, but he decided to not shoot at the TV. It’s important to be able to see it, you know.

He couldn’t understand why I wasn’t sympathetic this morning when he lost two darts outside. He had shot at a bird and then couldn’t find the dart. Then he shot at at butterfly and that dart can’t be found either. The ground is covered with little yellow leaves that make finding the little yellow darts difficult. The thought that went through my adult head was “um, didn’t we learn anything from the first time?” but I kept my mouth shut. I did track down one of them, because I am a little twitchy and my brain wasn’t in gear. It was lying in plain sight on the gravel; it must have camouflaged itself when they were looking for it.

Pop! Thwup!

His Father, the ever brave Col., has gone off to the quiet of his ‘hoffice‘ and left me alone to deal with the constant noise.

PopPop! ThwupThwup!

You see, The Col. didn’t buy it to give his son a fun toy. He didn’t buy it to give his son joy and the desires of his heart.

No, it is another tool in his nefarious plan to drive me slowly, totally insane.

Pop! Thwup!

October 9, 2007

Appliance Updates (2 Comments)

Filed under: In the Kitchen,Life — The Spider Herself @ 4:08 pm

I sniveled after it died. Whined when I had none. But have been fairly quiet about the replacement. Yes, I am revisiting the microwave issue. The new one is a GE Sensor Microwave Oven and overall, good. It has taken a while to get used to The New Guy on the Block after having the same one for 16 years. It’s more powerful than the old one so it’s taking practice to figure out how long to leave things in there without reducing them to molten, rubber objects. One lid has been “re-shaped”, shall we say, but we have not melted any containers, which is a good thing. Probably what I don’t like about it the most is that a person has to press “Time Cook” when a time less or more than a straight number is wanted. Did that make sense? If I want to heat something for 25 seconds (which I often do because I am horrible about finishing that last swallow of coffee and I don’t want it cold or boiling, thank you) I have to press “Time Cook” before I press the 2. If I press the 2 first then it turns on automatically for a two minute run. Grrrr! Also if you wanted to heat something for 1 minute 15 seconds, the “Time Cook” would have to be pressed first. Rather inconvenient if you ask me. There is a “Add 30 seconds” button which is nice and I use it quite a bit. I find that with the high power, I don’t need to heat things for very long and that makes the auto option on the numbers not at all handy. The defrost works well- which is a good thing as well as I plan ahead for dinner. (Hmm, it’s 3 o’clock, what’s for dinner? Girl! It’s too early to think about- keep blogging!) The popcorn button runs too short so I stand there and listen to it popping merrily away with 15 seconds left and just KNOW that there will tons of un-popped kernels left if I let it stop so I push that handy “Add 30 seconds” button but don’t let it run till the end of that! Did that once, burned popcorn anyone?

We recently acquired a new bread machine- ahem, excuse me a new “bread bakery”. Fancy, huh? It’s a very nice model that will hopefully last longer than a year or two, like the old one. It’s a Zojirushi– try saying that fast! It has a traditional shaped bread loaf pan and two kneading paddles in it. It can make a two pound loaf. So far it’s worked well. I wasn’t happy with the whole wheat recipe provided by the company- the top was flat and bumpy- not smooth. I am in the process of trying other whole wheat recipes most of which are turning out smooth on top but not rounded like a ‘real’ loaf would be. A small complaint because the texture and taste are good. I’ll keep fiddling with it. I was without a bread machine for a few months and found I really missed it.I’m just too lazy to make it by hand. I like having whole wheat bread without preservatives in it to feed my family (doesn’t that sound high and mighty!). Also, being that I am cheap thrifty, I think it will cost less in the long run for bread. One Christmas I used the other bread machine to make Cinnamon Swirl bread for The Col.’s co-workers (small loaves). I think they enjoyed it- and if they didn’t I never heard about it so they just may get it again someday.

The last item is not an appliance but it is a useful tool that is new to us- The Van. Overall we are pleased with it. The sliding doors are wonderful! It’s easy to reach the Girls and buckle them in. It’s comfortable. Things work in it. The fuel economy on long drives isn’t too bad- in town it leaves a little to be desired. After having diesels for so many years it’s a surprise to see such a difference. The ride is noisy and it lacks a certain…flash …but we’ll keep it.