Friday, 25 April 2008


Yesterday was the day to get stuff done.
I had a dentist appointment at 1pm, for a filling and cleaning, so I woke Bob up at 12. We got on the road by 12:30 - I drove since he wasn't quite awake. While I was scraped and poked and drilled, Bob started some laundry (our machine stopped spinning, so we took our clothes to the laundry mat), went to the education office to check his CLEP score (they said it was at Mildenhall), dropped off a few pictures to print, and got the mail. After the dentist (an hour and a half) we met a lady at her work to buy a used electric skillet. Then back to the laundry mat, where the clothes were dry. Bob and Taryn went in to fold, and I fed William in the car.
Then we met another lady at her home on base, and she gave me two board games - Guess Who? and Battleship. It was about 4 by now, and everyone was hungry, so we went to Taco Bell for an early dinner. Then Bob dropped the girls and I off at the commissary, and he took the boys to the BX. I got groceries, and he picked up his photos and bought a new memory card for his camera, since the old one died and he could only find one spare.
Then we got gas and headed home. It rained off and on yesterday, and on the way home we spotted a full, but faint, rainbow. So Bob stopped to take pictures. Speaking of pictures, the lady at the photo hut asked Bob if he would take pictures of their car. It seems her hubby has some snazzy car he's been working on, and wants to have pictures to send to a magazine. Sounds exciting, but he probably won't be finished with it until next year. So we have some time to work on ideas and come up with prices.

The children were SO wound up when we got home, and the sun came out, so I sent them outside. After Bob left for his photography club, they began trickling back in, so I called my parents (who'd been gone 10 days to my aunt's house) and let them talk a bit. But that didn't calm them down any, so I put them to bed. Then I tried to cook some chicken I'd got out to thaw, but it didn't work. I'm not convinced I like my new non-stick skillet. Anyway, I should have done the first batch in the iron skillet, and I should have breaded the second batch differently, but I didn't, so neither of them turned out right. So that was an hour well spent. Then Bob came home to get ready for work, and I got ready for bed. What a day!

The home owner decided to get a new washing machine rather than fix the old one, and it will be delivered on Tuesday. I wonder if we can make it that long without washing - I usually do two loads a day.

My potatoes have sprouted, and grown a little mold, so I'm loathe to use them for cooking. I'd really like to plant them and show the children how that works. But, no place to do so, and I'm afraid they'd dig them up. Taryn suggested just plant them in the "compost" pile behind the house, but I'm not sure that would be smiled upon by the neighbors (it's a communal area). As I was taking them out of the package, I saw that it said to keep them in the fridge. I'd never heard of refrigerating raw potatoes before.

Tuesday night Bob took me up to Tesco in Newmarket, and I got milk and a few things there. It's funny about organic stuff. In America, organic produce, milk, etc usually costs 2-3x the regular stuff. At the commissary, it's about that much for most things, but produce is about 5x the price. In town, it's just a few pennies difference in price. I wonder why? Supply and demand? England does seem to demand more organic, fair trade, free range type stuff. But I know a lot of Americans that would buy it if they could afford it.

Cedwryck is over the chicken pox. He only had one that got a little sore, and that was the first one, before we realized what it was, and he asked for (and we supplied) a bandaid on it, which held the pus in and aggravated it. So far no one else has got it.

Children are waking up, so I better close.


Ganeida said...

Hey, MamaO, try getting some mulch & planting the spuds in a garbage bin. A layer of muslch on the bottom. Plant your spuds (no soil is needed) & as the plant grows up towards the light keep muching to the top of the bin. You should get a heap of spuds.

MamaOlive said...

I just might. How deep of a bin do you think they could fill?

Ganeida said...

Not again! :( These intercontinental difficulties are a pain! lol. Um, well I was thinking one of our bins that are about 3 feet tall X 1 wide & come with a clip on lid but any sort of a substantial bin would do. The spuds just keep growing along the main stem so long as you keep muching up around the growing plant. A small bin won't work but any sort of a big one should.

Ganeida said...

Sorry. I am having trouble with the word mulching. Either my machine is dropping letters or I'm hitting the wrong keys but I do mean mulching.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure you don't have any, but I have heard of doing this with old tires-every time the plants get tall enough, you add another tire and fill it with dirt. I have wondered about the health aspect of this. jc

Ganeida said...

Yes, we've used tires & mulch. It works. The mulch keeps the tatties nice & clean.

S.A.M. said...

All my life we always placed our potatoes in the fridge, usually in that bottom vegetable pull out drawer. When I grew up I read you should keep them in a dark place not refrigerated, but now if I leave them too long they sprout buds. When I was a kid leaving them in the fridge they never did. The only reason I leave them out now is we have a teeny tiny fridge and I barely have room for most of my veggies.

As for organic food prices. It was a little more pricey back in NY than the normal stuff. But I bought organic OJ and it was almost always the same price as Tropicana or Minute Maid. One place I miss is Whole Foods, it's a huge supermarket and everything they sell is Organic, even the shampoo and the ale. Oh yeah they wouldn't sell beer only lager or ale.

Ok that's my two cents. :-)

MamaOlive said...

I thought that was the size bin you meant, but wanted to make sure. The house came with one, which the children cracked by rolling over it, so that would be perfect.
The last time I grew potatoes I placed them on top of garden soil, then covered with old straw (a couple of feet deep) and they grew well that way. No potato bugs, and easy to harvest. So I know what you mean about no soil needed.
Don't worry about missing a key now and then - my computer does it a lot, too.

No old tires around here, but that's a good idea to keep in mind.

S.a.m. now I've heard of keeping potatoes in the fridge. :-) We have 2 small fridges, so it's like one big one. You must miss a lot of the shopping opportunities; kind of like us being here and no Target. Culture shock!