My first stop is typically the little thrift shop in the church basement on 84th street. Most of the time I don't find anything, but when I do it is pretty good stuff. Today I came home with a belt bought more for the removeable Western buckle with a large agate in the centre. I'll wear that over and over and it was an absolute bargain at $5.00 I haven't checked it over closely, but I suspect it is silver.
A bit further up the street, and then around a corner is the Assistance League thrift store. I always find something there. They do a weekly sale of colour coded tags (like Goodwill does) at half price, .99 cents, etc. This week I bought half price earrings, bracelets, a beautiful silk scarf, and a vintage red, pussy bow blouse. I think a red blouse almost always works in my wardrobe.
Chuffed with how well I'd done (I'd still spent very little) I tried my luck at Hand Me Ups. There, I found a Missoni blouse I had, but gave away and regretted ever since. I was able to replace it new with tags and extra button for a few dollars.
By that point, I was really thinking it couldn't get any better, but I decided to try my luck at the Goodwill across the street from Hand Me Ups. I had almost given up when I spotted a 1970s black polyester jumpsuit with wide legs and rainbow trim. That was $5.79 It needs some re-stitching in spots but is otherwise in good condition.
My Thursdays aren't always so fruitful, but I enjoy being out (wearing an N95 mask with a surgical mask over it because I am not fucking around) and doing something just for myself. Tomorrow I'll get the groceries, and there will be cleaning and laundry, and the like but on Thursday I get to do my thing.
Fry the tofu first, then remove it to a plate and do the veg adding it back in at the end. So much of cooking is about timing and knowing that carrots will need longer to cook than peppers.
For an all purpose sort of sauce I combine:
1/4 c. low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons seasoned rice wine vinegar (or sherry)
1 tablespoon Swerve brown sugar replacement
1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
a pinch of mixed spice
1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
1 star anise
Enough low sodium vegetable broth to bring to 1 cup
2 tablespoons cornstarch (cornflour)
Mix it all together and pour over vegetables in last few minutes of cooking. You can add a splash of sesame oil if you like it (I loathe the smell). It will thicken as it cooks. If you cook it a bit too hard and it needs thinning extra broth or water should work fine.
This is less a recipe than a template because I don't know what sort of vegetables you have to hand. I do cook scallions in two parts with the whites first and the green part just tossed in at the end. I know that sounds like extra work, but it does make for a nicer stir fry.
So here I used, scallions, ginger root, garlic, red and orange bell peppers, zucchini, and carrots. With the tofu it was more than enough food.
I was completely wiped out after making dinner and cleaning up, so Mr. ETB offered to come with to do the grocery shopping and push the cart around. At 6:30 PM on a Friday night , it was rather empty and we were able to get what we needed quickly, and get out. No great meat bargains this time, but I did come home with $2.00 wine (I'll use it for cooking) and two pounds of cremini mushrooms for practically nothing. Mushrooms are so expensive, and I'm more than happy to have them. I do own a dehydrator and can always dry any extra, though I rarely have extra. Right now I have a large head of cabbage, mushrooms, and enough beans to keep them fed for a week at least. Saturday is typically a smorgasbord of leftovers from the previous week.
Last year during the height of the pandemic (though our cases locally are just as high now) I'd shop early in the morning and plan for several weeks at a time. I'm not doing that now, but I still avoid crowds and being in stores at peak times. With Mr. ETB along I wasn't tempted to shop for any clearance earrings at Target-and I do love the sale earrings at Target, though I doubt he'd have cared. I've only got two ears though! I probably don't need more earrings. Ever. I recently sent a few vintage pieces off to a young friend in Texas who will get more wear from them than I will.
Basic Polenta Recipe:
6 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups polenta (corn grits)
3 tablespoons margarine (optional)
In a large, heavy pot bring water and salt to a boil. Slowly whisk in the polenta and lower the temperature to a simmer. Cook about 30 minutes until thickened, stirring often. It WILL spit, so use a long spoon and stand back. When done, remove from heat, beat in margarine (or butter) and pour into a greased pan or bowl (I use a 9x13 inch Pyrex dish). Let stand about 10 minutes. Unmould onto a plate. It makes quite a lot, so wrap any extra and keep in in the fridge. To fry, dredge in flour to prevent sticking, and fry in a pan with about 1/8 of an inch of olive oil. Serve hot.
Sorry about that. I do try to keep it generally positive around here and on Instagram but I am losing my patience with these people that won't do anything to even pretend to be part of society. I'd be upset even if I personally didn't need medical care. Enough of this childishness already.
I'm doing NaNoWriMo this November because yeah, it is time to finish the damn thing. I'm not doing it officially as I'm rather far along, but I'm taking the excuse to complete the novel. Which is good because I have three other half-written pieces sitting around that will probably just end up on AO3 because at least one of them is flirting with fan fiction. But yeah, I need to get this stuff in order.
Thanksgiving and Hanukkah fall nearly together this year at the end of November. Then once December arrives I'll have Dan's birthday, Christmas, and all the other stuff. This is probably the last year he will humour me and let me bake a novelty cake . Most years the cakes reflect his interests so maybe the EU flag? It would certainly be easier than some of the ones I've done. We don't go wild with gift giving, but as he'll be turning 17 I wanted to give him something special (No, not an Adidas track suit!) and so far all I've picked up was a copy of Amanda Gorman's The Hill We Climb and Other Poems. I know that's meaningful to him, so I made the rare purchase of a new book. Most of my holiday cards are posted already.
My beloved White Sox (Danny supports the Cubs) are out now for the post season, so I won't have baseball distracting me. We won't talk about my feelings regarding the team manager except to say I'd feel the same about him if they'd won the World Series. They could have hired anyone and they went with Tony La Russa. God only knows why. But the players did a great job this year and should be proud of themselves.
Wow, that got off topic from Covidiots to the Sox but that's how my brain works these days. I should save that stuff for Tumblr. You're all welcome there, by the way. Mostly me reblogging things I find interesting.
Take care everyone.