Category Archives: creating home

WOWYUMMY! Alison’s 3-ingredient peanut butter cookies

Two weeks ago my friend Alison brought me a plate of cookies to thank me for lending her movies from my DVD  collection. I’m not telling how many  cookies I ate… I’m also not telling that I licked all the crumbs from the plate.

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You will seldom see a recipe on this site because I don’t like to cook; I would rather spend my time, energy, and creativity on projects that don’t disappear 15 minutes after I finish them. I hate to cook but I love to eat. Alison’s recipe fits all my requirements for a good recipe: fast, easy, inexpensive, and yummy. (Healthy doesn’t usually enter the equation.)

Note: not only do I love these cookies but so does the cat; I can’t decide if he’s a really weird cat or these are just really good cookies.

Alison’s 3-ingredient peanut butter cookies: WOWYUMMY

blend: 1 cup of peanut butter, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 egg in a mixing bowl

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roll dough into small balls about 1″ in diameter (larger cookies tend to crumble)

place 1″ balls on oiled cookie sheet and flatten slightly with fork tines

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bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes, carefully remove with spatula to plate or rack to cool, makes about 2 dozen small cookies (not counting the 4-5 eaten from the first tray while the rest are baking),

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post-Christmas blues

Pardon the interruption….due to  post-Christmas blues and flu.

 As much as I love Christmas I always have ambivalent feelings at the end of the season. The few days following Christmas seem to be anti-climactic and a bit depressing; a time to give up the sparkle and glow grinch walland get back to the ordinary and the mundane. At the same time another part of me is twitching to clear the Christmas “clutter” and get the house back to normal. As much as I love all the decorations I eventually get claustrophobic living with so much “stuff”. This year I had the strongest compulsion to take a really big garden hose and clear out the entire house. Yikes!

One way I found to help beat the post-Christmas blues:

When putting the house back to “normal”, put it back in a different way. Re-arrange furniture, add or take away color, pattern, or print, re-arrange accessories or art-work, or add something new; it gives the house a fresh new feeling and is a great way to start off the new year.

Many a man who thinks to found a home discovers that he has merely opened a tavern for his friends.                                                                                    Norman Douglas 

Enjoy your New Year’s Eve! Have fun! Stay safe!

Giving up the Glossies

Glossy, full-color “shelter” magazines; you know—the ones that have rooms with gargantuan amounts of space, exotic locales, unlimited budgets, and a New York designer. Several years ago I subscribed to three high-end interior design magazines, anticipating great decorating ideas and current styles and trends. After two years I realized that with each new issue, I felt, not inspired or enthused, but irritated. It is the same reaction I have to haute couture. What planet do these people live on? Clearly, we occupy different worlds. 

Like some designs of the haute couture, room designs can be just as ludicrous and the price tags just as preposterous. Looking through the magazines I often felt like the little boy in The Emperor’s New Clothes. Some rooms, lavishly filled with expensive furniture, costly accessories, and original art work, were just plain ugly. I could do ugly at a much lower price and save someone oodles of money. The rooms were showrooms…showcasing expensive furnishings but difficult to imagine as actual homes. I couldn’t envision spilling coffee on the $9,000 sofa, or the cat hocking up a fur ball on the $15,000 rug.

 Does it mean I have no taste…no style…no class? Probably!  Middle-class with bourgeoisie tastes? Maybe! An undeveloped palate and an uneducated opinion? Perhaps!

 I do know this: when I look at high-end fashion or high-ticket furnishings, even when I really like the design, appreciate the craftsmanship, love the materials, I can’t help thinking…of homeless people…of hungry children…of families without basic health care…of Henry David Thoreau and Walden Pond…of the 22,000 children who die each day of poverty. 

 Do I really need an $80,000 gown or a $9,000 sofa?

A gown I’d be afraid to wear and a sofa I’d be afraid to sit on.

And where would I wear an $80,000 gown…the coffee shop, the library, the grocery store? 

After two years of progressive irritation I’ve decided not to renew my subscriptions. The high-end magazines offer little that is relevant, significant, or pertinent to my life, my home, or my pocketbook. The magazines are not meant to be instructional, you’ll never find a DIY or a how-to, but you will find that over half the pages are filled with advertisements for products; products I don’t like or can’t afford. I don’t even like the majority of room designs, and frankly, who needs the irritation, especially when I have to pay for it. As for staying on top of current styles and trends…well, that’s a whole other post.