Did you know the U.S.D.A estimates 30% (I’ve even heard 40%) of the food in the United States is wasted? Wow. Shocking, right? Now some of that waste happens right in the fields, problems with harvesting machinery & such. Other waste may be a result of that produce being shaped or sized imperfectly. Oftentimes a store refuses to accept perfectly good but visually imperfect produce from farmers. They want only perfection to sell to their customers. (I absolutely hate this!) And some waste can be attributed to such things as restaurants serving too much food, or even that apple being forgotten in the back of your fridge until it’s no longer appealing.
But often, food waste is a result of consumers being confused about product date labels.
You may look at a box of mac-&-cheese and notice the date stamped on the box has passed. But it can be confusing. Use-by date, Sell-By Date, Best-By Date – what does it all mean???
It’s hard to believe we’re already in the waning days of 2017! And we’ve got a bright new year in front of us, full of possibilities & promise. But I’d like to take a moment & reflect on 2017 first. Today I’m sharing the top 10 homesteading posts of 2017. This list includes a few recipes such as no-knead Boule Bread and our favorite Planned Leftovers Meal – Carnitas Tacos. And it also includes some crafts such as making your own chalkboard labels with things you’ve already got. There are also some posts about interesting social observations that y’all really liked this year. Grab a cup of coffee & c’mon in, y’all!
When the kids were little we brought home a little black mini-toy poodle – our youngest named him ‘Toto. Yep, you can just guess which of her favorite movies our daughter had just watched!
Toto was her constant companion from the time she was 4 years old until she was grown. When she moved out after she graduated high school she even took him with her. He lived a long time & died at a ripe old age of 14 years, well loved all the way through.
This time of year we often see shouting from different sides of the fence about the holidays. Some are incensed that someone would dare take Christ out of the holiday, some are angry that someone is pushing for only homemade gifts while others are angry that some families like to shop for their Christmas gifts.
I find this puzzling and oftentimes very much counter to the season itself. A season that typically promotes feelings of joy & peace. You may not celebrate your holidays the way your neighbor does, and that’s OK!
“I see there’s an estate sale this weekend, do you think we should attend?” I asked RancherMan recently. As I went over their high-end offerings we got into a pretty deep conversation. You see, RancherMan & I often have these deep conversations with our morning coffee. We’ve discussed all manner of sensitive humanity topics. Nothing’s been off limits.
But today we were talking about the interesting social shift of current generations compared to generations passed. I wondered what future the estate sales and their higher quality antiquities would hold? Will they continue to attract buyers or would they just eventually disappear? And why are younger generations not interested in things like fine china or heavy well-made antique furniture?
I love Facebook, and I especially love our Facebook Followers. I get much enjoyment out of social media. From our Facebook pageI get to interact with some mighty fine folks always willing to help. And on my personal page I get to keep up with my family and our grandbabies and lots of friends. You know, stories about what they’re doing, the fun they’re having, etc. But sometimes my social media newsfeed is filled with half-truths being touted as true. It frustrates me to no end!
I’ve been very open about my feeling that everyone has the right to feel the way they do. Not everyone feels like me, and I’ll probably not have the same opinions as everyone else either. And that’s OK! But the thing that bothers me is someone hearing a story (perhaps purposely tilted by the media) and then taking the ball & running with it. They get busy spreading the rumor themselves feeling there must have been a gross injustice done.
But just because you read about it online (or even hear about it from a friend or family member) doesn’t make it true!
I’d like to share a real-life example with you why snap judgement about a situation might not be as it appears.
While traveling out of town to visit my aunt & uncle back in March of this year, RancherMan & I stopped into a very popular tourist restaurant, The Big Texan Steak Ranch. It’s a fun place with lots of energy and the food is delicious. Oh and they’ll fill your growler with some of their specialty beers. You know RancherMan is all over that! And their claim to fame is that if you can eat a whopping 72-oz steak with all the fixin’s in an hour you get your meal for free. (YIKES!) That challenge has been tried (and failed) many times. A few times someone’s actually been successful! (again, YIKES!) LOL
But as we were sitting at the table enjoying our meal I looked around the room. The dining room is semi-dimly lighted and tables are placed end-to-end in long rows. But right there by our table was the fire exit. I was shocked to see it was blocked by all manner of table-bussing trash and castaways. There were chunky high chairs stacked so high in front of the fire extinguisher you’d have to don your Superman cape, fly over and somehow move them all just to get to it. And the door itself was blocked with chairs, folding trays & menu trash. Wow. With the layout of this large dining room, this could be a disaster waiting to happen!
RancherMan & I were running errands in a nearby town recently and we decided to stop for a quick bite to eat. It was raining and there were rivers of water running through the parking lot, so a close parking spot was nowhere to be found.
We parked at the end of the building and made a run for the doors. As we finally reached the doors drenched from the rain, RancherMan leaned forward to open the door for me as he always does.
“PLUNK“. The door was locked.
OMGosh for the love of PETE– someone please help this make sense for me. Why oh why do so many business have TWO doors to their establishments only to have one locked at all times?? And we’ve even run across some businesses that post a permanent sign to inform patrons to use the other door forever! WHY?? (smh)