Thursday, January 27, 2005

Soda pop

Turns out I *had* heard of peanuts-and-Coke. My sisters and brothers remember doing it at lunch time at a Christian school we went to. I had totally forgotten about it! I bet I never tried it back then. I was in the 7th grade and probably much too "cool" to do something so childish... I just thought it was one of those weird food combinations that kids come up and claim to like... like mayonnaise-and-peanut-butter sandwiches or chocolate milk on their cereal... or something like that. Anyway, it's not bad... but I'll probably still mostly just drink my Coke with only ice in it and eat my peanuts on the side!

It's kinda interesting the flavor combinations that Coke and Pepsi have come out with lately, though... I worked at a deli/soda fountain, oh, 20 years or so ago. Remember the "New Coke" vs. "Classic Coke"? It was during all that hoopla. And the "Pepsi Challenge"... oh, yeah, and de-caf "Pepsi Free"... We had fun trying different flavor combinations then, too. We would add cherry syrup... or vanilla... or even chocolate syrup. I don't remember if we tried lemon or lime. We thought we were being so "old-fashioned" going back to some of the 1950's soda fountain flavors!

My DH misses "Apple Slice". When Pepsi came out with Slice (their version of Sprite) it was available in lemon-lime, orange, and apple flavors. Maybe others. I don't remember. DH really liked the apple flavor and was disappointed when they stopped making it. I just had a brainstorm, though! I could buy frozen apple juice concentrate and mix it up with seltzer water! I bet it would taste the same! Okay... gotta try that!

I did make boiled peanuts a week or so ago. Hmm... that already sounds good again. I bought enough raw peanuts for more than one batch. B'lieve I'll go boil some more!

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Telemarketers!

A telemarketer called the other night and asked to speak to "the female of the household"! I was the one who answered the phone. I wish I would have thought quickly enough to say, "What? Do I sound like a male?" But I didn't. I just hung up on him instead.

The idiot!

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Musings...

Seems like I've been reading a lot of "twaddle" lately. I want to find something thought-provoking to read. Not real heavy. Just something that makes me think, KWIM?

For example, I read a book awhile back (don't even remember the name of it...) about a man who unexpectedly came into a lot of money. He was able to go everywhere and do everything he had ever dreamed of. Then one day it occurred to him that no matter how rich he got there would always be certain things he would have to spend time doing... mundane things that there's no getting around... walking down the hall, dressing, bathing, going to the bathroom, waiting at stop lights... even eating and sleeping. Sure, nobody minds doing those things, but then I don't really mind doing the every day household maintenance type things either. I just get tired of doing them over and over, and there are usually other things I'd rather be doing.

Well, I don't know what conclusion can be drawn from all that... just some musings about a concept that made me think.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Creative beverages

I'm trying an experiment. I have been trying to wean my family off pop. It's not easy! Yesterday I had a coupon for one of the local grocery stores, six 12-packs of store-brand pop for $10... a pretty good price. I noticed that one of their "flavors" was "sparkling water" and they also had lemon lime flavored sparkling water. Zero calories but no artificial sweetener. Now, I like sparkling water but my family doesn't, but I had an idea. I went ahead and got 6 cartons of sparkling water, and then I went over to the coffee department and bought some flavored syrup. I got vanilla syrup and raspberry syrup. When I got home I put ice in a glass, poured 2 tablespoons of syrup over the ice, filled the glass with sparkling water, and then stirred it with a straw. It was less than half the calories of regular pop. A can of pop has about 170 calories. The syrup was 40 calories per tablespoon. The kids loved the vanilla flavor... tasted just like cream soda. They weren't so crazy about the raspberry flavor. DH said it was "okay" but he's not convinced it's as good as "regular" pop. Maybe I'll put 3 tablespoons in his next time and then gradually cut back on it? Think he'd go for it? Probably not! Oh, well... if I can convince the kids this is just as good at least I know they aren't ingesting as much sugar... and not the nasty chemicals that artificial sweeteners are made of either!

I thought I could also try mixing concentrated fruit juice with the seltzer water. That should be good. And I even thought of trying to make my own flavored syrup with Kool-Aid powder and corn syrup. Don't know if the two would blend very well or not. When I was a kid you could even buy Coke syrup at the drug store... and root beer extract at the grocery store. Haven't seen either of those for years. But then I haven't asked about them either. I don't know if they would still be available or not. The only advantage I see there, though, would be that you could gradually cut back on the amount you use to cut back on the sugar without having a flat pop. However, the flavor may be too weak to be enjoyable in that case. I think that's why DH wasn't too impressed with the raspberry soda.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Eagle Watch

The lake was beautiful today... but, oh-so-cold! We got to go on an "eagle watch cruise" with the homeschool group to see the bald eagles that feed on spawning fish in the lake this time of year. Fortunately, the boat was enclosed and heated, so we didn't freeze to death! They also served hot chocolate. It was very nice. The kids liked going out on the deck, but they didn't stay out very long at a time because it was really cold. Mist was rising off the water because the water was actually warmer than the air. And the rising mist had frosted the trees. Part of the time it was snowing, and part of the time the sun was shining brightly. We really enjoyed the beautiful scenery!

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Funny cat!

Our cat is so funny. She won't eat anything except dry cat food. Not even canned cat food, tuna, or sardines. And she wants it in the same place all the time! The other day I moved it. She came in to eat so I showed her where I moved her dish. She sniffed it but wouldn't take a bite until she had gone over to where her dish used to be to see if it was still there. When she found out it wasn't, then she was content to come back over to where I moved it to eat. She likes to go outside, but as cold as it is she wants right back in. Then she forgets how cold it is outside and wants right back out!

Supermarket Tabloids

Who writes or reads the supermarket tabloids anyway??? I saw the most bizarre picture on the cover of one at Safeway just now. "Adam and Ed: the first humans were a gay couple" or something to that effect. And there was a fuzzy black and white picture of two skeltons with their arms around each other and FIG LEAVES strategically placed over their privates, with a NOTE pointing them out!!!! I am so sure!!!!!!!! That is unbelievable and ludicrous in just about every way imaginable! Good grief!

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Polar Express

We very rarely see a movie in a theater, but this past weekend we saw The Polar Express in 3D at the IMAX theater. Now, that was an experience!

We bought our tickets early and then went to eat, but we cut it awfully close getting out of the restaurant so we rushed into the theater just as the lights were going down... and the only seats left were in the very front row! NOT the place you wanna sit for a 3D movie at IMAX! It was very impressive in 3D... it almost seemed like one could reach out and catch the falling snowflakes. And the computer animation in this movie is phenomenal. However, by the end of the movie I was just downright queasy! And so was everyone else in our party. I wonder why they even put seats that close to the screen in IMAX?

I was also wondering how many different roles Tom Hanks played in this movie. We counted 5.

Friday, January 7, 2005

Coke and peanuts

Some book I was reading recently described "an old southern custom" of dropping peanuts in a bottle of Coke, drinking the Coke and then eating the peanuts out of the bottom. I am originally from the South and I had never heard of such a thing. So I asked the ladies on my Southron Lady Yahoo group if they knew about it. Yes, several of them did. My mother even e-mailed me about it! She said when she was growing up (in southwestern Oklahoma) if they had a dime for lunch they would get a bottle of Coke and a bag of peanuts, and that was a real treat! Five cents for a bottle of Coke and five cents for a bag of peanuts! When we were growing up (in the 1970s) such a treat would have cost more than a dime, which was more than my parents could afford, so I guess that's why I never knew about it. (We didn't get to have pop much at all when I was little.)

So... for Christmas this year I asked for a carton of bottled Coke. I'm sure the cans would work just as well... but I wanted the real old-fashioned experience of dropping the peanuts down the neck of the Coke bottle! The Coca-Cola company always comes out with glass bottles at Christmas time. Don't know if they're available any other time. I finally got to try it last night... and I like it! I was surprised how quickly the peanuts got soggy. The Coke makes them fizz, too, so it's fun to watch. Maybe it's the carbonation that makes them get soggy so fast.

I love soggy (boiled) peanuts! That's another southern thing, I guess. Most people I have mentioned it to have never heard of it, and they don't think they would like them. Once in awhile I'll buy some raw peanuts in the shell and put 'em in a pot of water on the stove and add lots of salt, then let 'em boil for an hour or so. I guess I have weird tastes, but I really do enjoy peanuts that way.

Thursday, January 6, 2005

It's snowing!

We are finally getting snow! It started snowing a couple of hours ago and it's really piling up fast out there. It's been pretty cold for awhile, so the snow is definitely sticking and will probably be around for awhile.

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

Winter escape

I'm cold! We haven't had much snow yet, but it's been pretty cold (below freezing, anyway) for several days.

I think I'm going to sneak out to Borders in a bit. Sometimes I just like to go to browse the shelves, grab an armful of books that look interesting, and sit down in one of those big comfy chairs to peruse my selections. Maybe I'll splurge and buy a latte while I'm there. That sounds good!

Monday, January 3, 2005

Ramblin' Update

I keep thinking I will be inspired to write something really profound... or at the very least, something worth saving... but so far nothing is coming to me! So I guess I'll just post some random thoughts.

My scrapbooks are calling my name. Unfortunately, I still haven't gotten to them... unless moving the box of "scraps" over in front of the shelf with the "books" on it counts! I did dig through the box a little bit Saturday but never had time to do anything with it. Soon, I hope!

We did "homeschooling light" through the month of December and I had hoped to get back in the "harness" today... but the week is already shot! Medical appointments today and Wednesday, a business trip with DH on Thursday and Friday. So much for normal! Good thing I didn't take the whole month of December off like I have some years.

I've enjoyed reading about the rescue of a baby squirrel on wodaking's blog. I had never heard of such a thing before, and come to find out, this is the second one she's rescued! Cool, huh?

To go along with the Bible reading project, I am currently reading an old, old book (copyright 1898 or something) that my dad gave me from his library on How We Got Our Bible. It is fascinating how the Word has been preserved all these many years. Another book he gave me is Josephus. That would be cool to read alongside the Bible... however it is HUGE! Wonder how far I would get in that? I do have ambitious literary goals!

My sister and her DH just got back from a mission trip to Mexico. She is going to post about it on her blog soon. Can't wait to read about it. (Hint! Hint!)

I got a new coffee pot last week. It is so cool! It is the Home Cafe system by Black & Decker. It "pressure-brews" just like the coffee houses do, instead of the drip kind you usually use at home. The best part is, it makes one cup at a time so you always have fresh coffee. It dispenses right into your cup so there's no pot to wash! The "pods" are a little expensive compared to regular coffee, but I figure with the left-over "stale" coffee I always pour out at the end of the day, it probably doesn't come out to be that much more expensive. Anyway, I'm having fun with it!

Okay, I guess that's enough random chatter from me... Tune in again soon!