Monday, June 23, 2014

More hurry up and wait

In my original dreams, I thought the remodeling would be 100% complete by now. (Don't laugh.) Phase 1 is 100% complete, the bill is paid, onto phase 2... someday. The shower enclosure may take four (4!!!) weeks to get in. So I suggested, if that were the case, we move onto phase 3 while we wait. Unfortunately, that phase needs to be requoted because they forgot to include the flooring by the front door and I decided the wallpaper in the dining room has to go, and the person who handles that process is on vacation this week. So no forward progress in the near future. Grrr.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

To DIE for

I get two gallons of milk every two weeks from my herdshare. Half of it usually ends up as yogurt, some is transformed into ice cream, and, not as often as I would like, I make cheese. Sometimes there is more milk than I can use, so I am always looking for unique ways to ingest this wonderful white stuff. And here is one: dulce de leche. It takes FOREVER to cook down, but it is one of the most wonderful flavors on earth.

I made it just plain this first time around, but am sure to try flavoring it with vanilla and/or cinnamon and/or ??? We have been eating it on Jeni's Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World (homemade). Tonight we are having it on (homemade) butter pecan. But frequently I sample a spoonful right from the jar. It truly is wonderful stuff.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Phase 1 is unofficially done

Almost two months have passed since I declared phase 1 of the remodeling to be complete (more or less). As of today (Friday), it really is done. What took so long?

The major delay was caused by the side piece to the vanity top which no one noticed was missing until almost everything was done, and then it took quite a while to get one in. Also, I had to resolve the issue of the sticky-out medicine cabinet blocking the light from the new light fixture. Many solutions were suggested - box out the light fixture so it stuck out further from the wall, pick out a new light fixture with arms (like the old one), recess the medicine cabinet. The first solution would have looked dumb, the second was not possible because for some reason they don't make bathroom light fixtures with arms anymore, the last troubling because if it were easy to recess the medicine cabinet, wouldn't the builders of the house done that? Then I came up with the bright idea of taking the door off the medicine cabinet and hanging that on the wall; I don't use the items in the cabinet on a daily basis, so they can go under the sink. My daughter suggested I just get a new mirror altogether. So *that* is what we finally did. The mirror and side piece to the vanity top were installed.

To make it all official, there is to be a final walk-through and then I have to pay the balance owed. Next up: phase 2.

(I will admit to being a bit peeved that it has taken this long to wrap up, as I was hoping to have all three phases done by now. But the remaining items were minor, worker bees were not occupying my abode for the duration, and I've been plenty busy with the garden and other sundry activities. I did try to goose them along about phase 2, but they don't seem to be goosable.)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Mom was right

Once upon a time, my mother told me that milk glasses should be rinsed with cold water before washing. I'm sure she told me why, but I must have stopped listening before that part. At the cheesemaking workshop I learned why: to prevent milkstone. What is milkstone? you ask. It's a white film that forms on metal and glass from repeated contact with milk. Containers and utensils may look clean, but the film reappears unless removed with something like vinegar. I know this because my cheese vats suffered from this affliction until I cleaned them and mended my ways.

This morning's rain brought a reprieve from weeding gardening, so I spent the time mostly in the kitchen, making yogurt, baking dog biscuits, cleaning strawberries, making Jeni's Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World, cooking bacon which magically turned into Quiche Lorraine for supper. I was too lazy to drive up to the grocery store for a pie crust, so made my own (from LARD). It has been a long time since I made a pie crust. The funny thing is, it wasn't my hands patting and rolling the dough, but my mother's. She passed away when I was 20. The older I get, the more I think about her. And apparently, the more I resemble her. Looking back, I realize I could really have used her help and advice while raising my kids. Hopefully, I would have listened better than I did about milkstone.