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One: Hey, anyone who's local have a food dehydrator I can borrow? A patient gave me a bunch of beautiful ripe plums from his tree, and they'll go bad before I can eat them all. I would like to dry them, but I'm not sure how without a dehydrator.

Two: Recall from previous gripes postings that I can't use my full-size boiling water canner on my ceramic stove. Nor can I casually drop $80 on a small-size canner with a small-sized canning rack.

However.... I have a perfectly fine stockpot that boils water just fine. I can put a makeshift canning rack in it that covers the bottom of the stockpot (thus keeping the bottom of the glass canning jars away from direct heat). However, I notice that the official canning rack has handles so I can lift the rack in and out of the canner. Do I absolutely NEED a canning rack with handles, or can I just lift jars in and out of my stockpot with the canning-jar tongs I already have??


Apr. 9th, 2010 10:45 pm
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Last year's garden: Two tomatoes (Romas, Early Girls), zucchini, cucumbers, tarragon, English thyme, lemon thyme, sage, chamomile.

This year's version: Two tomatoes (Romas and Early Girls), Blue Lake bush beans, pickling cucumbers, chamomile,  red and yellow bell peppers, nasturtium... and the tarragon, English thyme, and sage that survived the winter.

This year: No zucchini.
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I have been steadily socking away the moolah in my brokerage account for the last year. And, as a result, my investment account balance is almost back to its late-2007 level.

I spent thirty minutes grousing about that, and then realized that by doing so I am buying when prices are low, not when they are high.

Um, yeah. No more grousing. Back to the manic monetary squirrel routine.
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I was reading about financial planning, and the blog author segued into life planning-- his point was that, once you know what you want to do with your life, you can make financial choices that reflect those values.

Can you answer these three questions? Notice that the first one is easy and they get harder as you go.

  1. Imagine you are financially secure, that you have enough money to take care of your needs, now and in the future. How would you live your life? Would you change anything? Let yourself go. Don’t hold back on your dreams. Describe a life that is complete and richly yours.
  2. Now imagine that you visit your doctor, who tells you that you have only 5-10 years to live. You won’t ever feel sick, but you will have no notice of the moment of your death. What will you do in the time you have remaining? Will you change your life and how will you do it? (Note that this question does not assume unlimited funds.)
  3. Finally, imagine that your doctor shocks you with the news that you only have 24 hours to live. Notice what feelings arise as you confront your very real mortality. Ask yourself: What did you miss? Who did you not get to be? What did you not get to do?

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Sometimes I use my journal to remember useful stuff. This seemed like it might be general interest. Skip if not interested. G

Dear Mary: We are moving into a new home. The two previous tenants had animals, and it stinks horribly. Other than replacing the carpet at my own expense, is there anything I can do to get rid of, or at least diminish, the smells? -- Ellie, Washington

Dear Ellie: There is, and it is called Nok-Out.

This is a spray product available online at The stuff is amazing and the only thing I know of to totally and completely eliminate those horrible pet odors, even if they have been there for a long time. Nok-Out is odorless, nonstaining and nontoxic to kids, pets and plants. You can use it on carpet, hard flooring, in sick rooms and automobiles. It knocks out the smell of cigarettes, too. Amazing stuff.


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Pilot Precise Gel 07 with a rubber gripper.

That is all.
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Okay, okay. Periodically someone explains this to me, and I get it, and then they go away, and several hours later it's all fuzzy again. So I'll write this distinction HERE, and then By God I'll be able to look it up.

If two people are first cousins (you know, the ones we usually consider to be cousins), then their children are considered "first cousins once removed". So for example my cousin BJ's children and my sister's children are first cousins once removed.

If two people are first cousins, and they have children, then the cousins are second cousins to the children. So, for example, cousin BJ's children are my second cousins (and I'm their second cousin).

okaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay.... nailed it. Tagging appropriately.


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