Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Mixed in Advance

If you take a look inside my kitchen cupboards, you will find a mountain of baggies. Not empty though, they are all filled with powders and mixes, to make my cooking faster. If you're pressed for time, take one day a week to pre-make mixes. You'll be amazed at how you can fly through suppers! I took one day (actually only half a day) to make 7 oatmeal breakfasts, 3 Hamburger Helper sauce packs, 3 beef gravies, 3 chicken gravies, and 4 burritos to freeze. That's just from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and I even took a break to go buy some missing ingredients. And I did this all with a 2-year old running around my legs!

You don't have to stick to just powder-mixes either. You can pre-cook and freeze meals as well. If you took just one day per week to prepare for the rest of the week, you could save piles of time on the other days (especially if you have a full-time job).

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Winter Container Gardening Indoors

Here in Manitoba, Zone 3 for you gardening buffs, winter means a long, boring stretch of time, dreaming of my garden. This year I decided to do some houseplants to kill that winter boredom, however I'm not a flower person! If I grow something, it has to be edible or productive in some way (as my uncle says, "If you can't eat it or smoke it, what good is it?").
So I started three cotton plants (I had to give them to my mother because I had no south-facing windows. They sprouted nicely but once they got to about four inches tall, just couldn't go any furhter without more light). After my cotton babies went to a sunnier home, I started a pumpkin (purely as an experiment) which has grown to about six inches tall, and two green onions which are continuously sprouting no matter how much I chop them up into my food.
My aloe vera plant that my mother gave me is doing quite nicely. It's not big enough for harvesting to make an aloe vera drink, but it's handy to snip off a tip whenever I burn my fingers. My potatoes didn't sprout, but I probably didn't wait long enough between cutting and planting, so they probably just rotted.
I also ordered brocolli and lettuce seeds, which will be arriving soon. Hopefully they do well, since they are low-light plants.