Looking through my mother’s cookbooks the other day, I was reminded of my mom teaching my brother and I how to create a weekly meal plan when we were younger. She worked full-time outside the home, so she put our ass to work whenever she could to help out around the house. . . . we survived! You can download a meal planner and grocery list below. A meal planner and a shopping list are the best ways to save money when planning meals for your family – big or small.
I inherited a few of my mom’s cookbooks – I like looking through them to see her notes, I miss her handwriting. I was going through her Emeril Lagasse’s cookbook and it brought up memories of her and I watching his first-of-it’s-kind cooking show “BAM” – “Kickin this up a notch” and a few of his other sayings, along with Emeril’s storytelling and let’s not forget the LIVE band which made it an awesome show. I have such wonderful memories of Ms. Bev (my mom) and myself hanging out – laughing and telling stories in the kitchen.
***Enjoy the recipes – my mother made both of these delicious dishes***
Do you have stories of cooking with your mom?
Let’s kick up your savings a notch with these freebies below
Peace Harmony & Happy memories!
for the Season
When the leaves are falling off the trees at summer homes or the snow has finally melted around the winter cabin, preparing to leave can be bittersweet.
There are many reasons to spend time closing a seasonal home properly including burst pipes, vandalism, rodents, and structural damage.
To avoid these pitfalls and make re-opening the summer home easier, here are 10 tips to help close your seasonal properties.
- Clean out the kitchen. Thoroughly clean out the refrigerator and unplug it; you don’t want mildew damaging your appliances in the spring. Also, clean the cabinets and cupboards.
- Clean out the living areas and bedrooms. Store away bedspreads and linens (use vacuum bags to store) — there is no place more comfortable for rodents to sleep than in your bedspread. Allow your cabin to breathe while you are away. Leave doors and drawers open to increase circulation.
- Block off the flues and stovepipes. Make sure you have closed the flue on your stove. Also, sealing flues and stovepipes with a metal cap should keep the birds and rodents out.
- Cover the windows. Plywood or thin sheet metal will do. Put handles on the outside of the wood (one on each side to make easy to pick up) and number the pieces to make next year’s close easier. Sealing your cottage will not only protect it from the weather but will also keep unwanted visitors away.
- Drain the pipes. Make certain that you drain and shut off your water before you leave for good. The last thing you want is for lingering water to freeze your pipes.
- Don’t forget the little things. Sometimes the little things are often overlooked. Make sure you forward your mail to your permanent address. Make sure your service contacts, like plumbers and electricians, know how to reach you away from the summer home. With my “snowbird” clients – I offer this service as part of my cleaning package.
- Consider security. If you are concerned about intruders, deadbolts are an option as well as hiring a year-round resident to keep his or her eyes out for you. You should also consider motion detector lights and security cameras to deter unwanted visitors.
- Remove fire hazards. This is as easy as removing all papers, newspapers, old rags, and chemicals, turning off all utilities and unplugging appliances.
- Secure outside furniture, equipment, and boats. Take the time to gather all outside furniture and clean it before you secure and cover it. Turn your small boats upside down and if there is a drain hole, open it up, making sure it is on the downhill side of any slope.
- Don’t Say Goodbye – Say So Long. Before you pull out of your driveway for the season, don’t be afraid to reflect on the wonderful season it has been. Think about all the new things that happened, special times you had and the long-lasting memories that still await. Reflection of time is priceless.
Peace Harmony & Happy Autumn!
** Just a little side note – Penny Marshall (Laverne of Laverne & Shirley) was best friends with Paul and Artie. She and best girlfriend Carrie Fisher (Star Wars Princess Leia) was partying with them at Paul apartment when Penny asked them to sing a song (which they had not sung together in years). Penny took credit for both of them singing on this night in Central Park! Lol
“I’ll be seeing you in all the familiar places”
It’s with great sadness to say that my father-in-law has passed away. He was always working with his hands. He had beautiful gardens that attracted the most musical birds to the yard. He grew the biggest kale I have ever seen or seen since – it was delicious! He grew figs, fruit, vegetables and had pretty colorful plants and flowers around the home that he and my mother-in-law cultivated and cared for.
It’s always the little things that you miss when your “family landscape” starts to change. As I was going through just some of my collection of pictures – I realize I miss when the girls were young and we would all gather at my in-laws on Christmas Eve Evening. The girls would be full of wonder, they would hear the Santa bells from outside, some ran to the window to look out and some would run and hide! My father-in-law loved the holidays, I would catch glimpses of him watching the girls dance around the house as he smiled. He would be trying to tell them to “settle down” with his deep Portuguese accent but would tease them to get them running around again.
My father-in-law Henrique Camacho (AKA Pai, avo), will be truly missed by his familia XO
Happy 81st Birthday Mom!
This is how you dress to attend a “Chicken Wedding” – I not kidding . . . you can’t make this shit up! The story will be in my book. I know I’m not the only out here from a family that – Let me say – put the “D” is dysfunctional. With that said, Mom and I had a roller-coaster of a relationship during the time WE both were growing up.
The one thing that I am so Thankful and Blessed for: is we never gave up on each other. We got pissed off at each other, we yelled at each other, we walked out on each other, gave each other the silent treatment. But, through all those times we never gave up on each other.
And I am so damn happy we didn’t. Once I got into adulthood, I was growing up and Bev was growing up right along with me. I am now left with the best memories of the times we laughed so hard my sides would hurt the next day. I used to tell her when she would be mad at me, I would say “no one loves you like I do – nobody”. A couple of days before she died, she turned to me when we were napping together and said “you’re so fuckin right nobody loves me like you do”
Never give up on the ones you know are worth it!