Tricks of the trade

If you’ve got pesto, tomatoes, a can of white beans, pasta, and garlic, you have the kind of thing I’d make for dinner last summer.  Lunch would be something that didn’t involve firing up the stove – it’s hot enough up here during those months.

Six months from now, if I’m complaining about the heat, remind me about Western New York in January.

I made the pesto and canned the tomatoes at the end of the summer to try and save our garden’s flavors for a day like today, when the wind is whistling past and I wouldn’t be leaving the house at all if it weren’t for the fact that our local movie theater is having a Lebowski Fest tonight.

I’ve started keeping a bag in the freezer for all the vegetable scraps we generate.  The next time I make stock, everything will be ready to go.  Usually this kind of stuff would go right in the compost, but it’s cold for that anyway.  Oh, and two tips for using plastic bags like this:

1. Roll the top down.  You don’t have to reach as far in, the bag stays open, and food residue won’t get all over the top where you have to knot it.  This works for snack bags too – it’s almost like you’re serving the chips in a bowl.  ALMOST.

2. Knot the bag loosely.  Preferably don’t even complete the overhand knot, just leave the tail hanging and a loop pulled through.  There’s nothing you can do with an overtightened knot in a plastic bag; you have to cut the bag, and you lose half the storage space.

You learn all kinds of things when training to be an Outdoor Ed leader, not least of which involve bags.

Feed this lunch to two hungry guys who have been repairing and delivering furniture all morning… two hungry guys who have no idea what to do when you point a camera at them:

Today’s project is stripping a dining room table.  Under all of the discoloration and damage (someone had apparently been using it as a sawhorse), they found really pretty wood.

The guys work miracles on this furniture.  They’ll bring something in that’s ugly and broken, fix it, paint or refinish it, and have it out the door within a week.  That piece of furniture stays in circulation instead of being replaced by a newly made one.  And the new owner has saved some money!

People really like dressers with mirrors in this town, so we try to keep a few in stock at all times.  Since I don’t have a good mirror in my room, those dressers are handy for checking my look right before leaving the house  Or not, because then the dudes have to deal with me running back upstairs to find a different scarf, one that actually matches.

Mirrors are also great for when you want to take a picture of your new camera.

Isn’t it pretty?  It’s a Nikon.

Stay warm, everybody!  Just pretend it’s July and there’s plenty of fresh basil…

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One Response to Tricks of the trade

  1. Rae says:

    Ooh memories! Knot bags! Rolled back snack bags… intense nostalgia.
    Also love those two fine men sporting their flannels. There is a serious dearth of flanneled men here these days.

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